Rwanda, Inc.: How a Devastated Nation Became an Economic Model for the Developing World

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Overview

Seventeen years after the genocide that made Rwanda international news, the country has achieved a miraculous turnaround. This war-torn country has adopted the most promising African model for economic development, shepherded by its shrewd and decisive president, Paul Kagame. Here, Patricia Crisafulli & Andrea Redmond look at Kagame’s leadership and the key elements of the so-called Rwanda Model, including self-determination and self-sufficiency, and how it can lift developing nations out of poverty without ...

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Rwanda, Inc.: How a Devastated Nation Became an Economic Model for the Developing World

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Overview

Seventeen years after the genocide that made Rwanda international news, the country has achieved a miraculous turnaround. This war-torn country has adopted the most promising African model for economic development, shepherded by its shrewd and decisive president, Paul Kagame. Here, Patricia Crisafulli & Andrea Redmond look at Kagame’s leadership and the key elements of the so-called Rwanda Model, including self-determination and self-sufficiency, and how it can lift developing nations out of poverty without relying on Western aid. They also explore the role of the West in assisting Rwanda with one of its most important goals: to educate its young people with nine years of compulsory schooling, and then sending the best and brightest to U.S. colleges and universities, in the hopes that they will return to help their home country achieve its development goals. As so many nations stand on the brink of political and economic revolution, this is a timely and fascinating look at the implications of Rwanda’s success for the rest of the continent.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In their latest, Crisafulli and Redmond (coauthors of Comebacks: Powerful Lessons from Leaders Who Endured Setbacks and Recaptured Success on Their Terms) investigate the Rwandan renaissance, focusing on "Rwanda's CEO," Paul Kagame, a former refugee turned politician. Now in his second term as president, Kagame looks toward the future in light of the "lofty" objectives he set for his administration and nation. His hope to make Rwanda a self-sufficient economy is encompassed in his Vision 2020, a series of goals that range from decreasing the number of citizens who live in poverty to developing the Rwandan stock market. During Kagame's tenure, he has placed a heightened importance on education—making 12 years of schooling compulsory— while stimulating agriculture. His initiatives favoring universal health care, unification and reconciliation, and grassroots change have improved the quality of life and encouraged investment by outsiders. Although the authors seem too quick to dismiss criticism by Human Rights Watch and others, this is a fascinating portrait of a nation and a president at a pivotal moment in history. Agent: Delia Berrigan Fakis, DSM Literary Agency. (Nov.)
Kirkus Reviews
A mostly optimistic assessment of the small East African nation nearly destroyed by genocide during the first half of the 1990s. Crisafulli and Redmond (co-authors: Comebacks: Powerful Lessons from Leaders Who Endured Setbacks and Recaptured Success on Their Terms, 2010) focus on the post-genocide presidency of Paul Kagame, a Rwandan native who grew up as an exile in Uganda and returned to his homeland as the leader of military rebels hoping to restore unity. Kagame is not portrayed as completely flawless, but nearly so. He earns accolades from the authors, who have traveled extensively in Rwanda, for helping to heal the nation after a million or more deaths due to hostility between the Hutus and the Tutsis. Crisafulli and Redmond depict Kagame running Rwanda more or less like the powerful, benevolent CEO of a major corporation. Improvements in poverty levels, education, health and electrification are impressive by any measure, although the country has a long way to go before the majority of its residents can be called prosperous. The authors suggest that an apt comparison can be found in South Korea, which developed quickly once its citizenry expressed the desire for change and identified appropriate leaders. This comparison would be more persuasive if the authors' discussion of Rwandan development depended less on generalities. However, a few specific examples resonate strongly, such as the story of a Westerner who studied the coffee trade in Rwanda and found a way to increase exports while improving the lot of local coffee growers. According to Rwanda's new constitution, Kagame must surrender the presidency after serving two electoral terms. The authors say they believe he will step aside peacefully in 2017 because of his love for the nation. Despite an occasionally confusing narrative structure, the authors provide an instructive snapshot of Rwanda today.
From the Publisher
“In Rwanda, Inc., Crisafulli and Redmond recount the rise of an unyielding people and their chief executive, President Paul Kagame.  The Rwandans, rallying around their national pride, have built predictable systems that reward enterprise and hard work, and created an exceptional blueprint for other developing countries.”—President Bill Clinton

“Crisafulli and Redmond investigate the Rwandan renaissance, focusing on ‘Rwanda's CEO,’ Paul Kagame…a fascinating portrait of a nation and a president at a pivotal moment in history.”—Publishers Weekly

"An instructive snapshot of Rwanda today."—Kirkus Reviews

“Rwanda is the most amazing story in Africa—the fastest rate of poverty reduction ever achieved on the continent, despite huge handicaps of history and geography. Yet until now, these achievements have largely been missed by the outside world. This book will awaken you to Africa's most extraordinary phoenix.”—Paul Collier, author of The Bottom Billion

“Andrea Redmond and Patricia Crisafulli are known for their ability to connect with people, examine leadership skills and teach us through their compelling observations and insights.  As advocates for the future of Rwanda, they are now telling a story that we can all benefit from hearing.”—Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO, JPMorgan Chase

 

"Rwanda Inc. documents this beautiful country's ongoing transformation through the lens of leadership, capturing the resilience of the human spirit and the potential for any country-or company-to chart an ambitious new course with ingenuity, collaboration, pragmatism and passion."—Howard Schultz, chairman, president and chief executive officer, Starbucks

"In the 21st century, finding ways to transform poor countries may mean the difference between war and peace.  Any country that can provide a model for how to make poor societies prosperous will contribute decisively to global stability.  This book suggests Rwanda may be building that model.  Rwanda Inc. is the story of the most exciting development project underway in the world today."—Stephen Kinzer, author of A Thousand Hills

“Paul Kagame is one of my heroes and I believe should be recognized as a ‘Hero of the World’.  He has led Rwanda out of the most hellish nightmare one can imagine, into the daylight of national reconciliation and the formation of a democracy.  This is a story that can become a model for the entire African continent.”—James Sinegal, Co-Founder & Director, Costco

“Rwanda has achieved a remarkable turnaround, from the poster child of despair to symbol of progress, in less than 20 years.  The unique leadership attributes of Rwandan President Kagame and his drive for broad-based economic growth continue to move the country forward. Rwanda today is inclusive, focuses on reconciliation, empowers women, decentralizes government, and involves the community in rebuilding—for the benefit of all. This is why Marriott wants to do business in Rwanda.  Here, Crisafulli and Redmond tell this turnaround story brilliantly.”—Arne M. Sorenson, President & Chief Executive Officer, Marriott International, Inc. 

"By adopting an approach of 'trade not aid,' our company has developed a sustainable multi-million-dollar business relationship with Rwanda since 2005. Our beautiful, handmade Path to Peace baskets, sold in Macy's stores and on macys.com, help hundreds of widows of the genocide support themselves and their families. In Rwanda, Inc., Patricia Crisafulli and Andrea Redmond outline how President Kagame rebuilt the Rwandan nation in a manner that encouraged business collaboration and projects like Path to Peace at Macy's. In the process, what was a tragedy has become a story of inspiration and hope, with all of the women of Rwanda working side by side."—Terry J. Lundgren, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Macy's, Inc.

 

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780230340220
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 11/13/2012
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 9.30 (w) x 6.30 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Patricia Crisafulli is the author of several books including The House of Dimon and Comebacks, which she co-authored with Andrea Redmond. A former business journalist for the Chicago bureau of Reuters America, Crisafulli's articles have appeared in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Boston Globe, and other national newspapers. Crisafulli has been featured on national television and in radio broadcasts, as well as in several magazines and newspapers. As a ghostwriter, she has worked extensively with thought leaders in business, finance, and leadership on more than 20 book projects.

Andrea Redmond is a well-regarded consultant who works with corporate boards, CEOs, Fortune 500 companies, and private investors. She sits on several boards of directors, including The Allstate Corporation, Children's Memorial Hospital, Northwestern University Hospital, and the Robert H. Lurie Cancer Center.

The authors live in Chicago, Illinois.

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  • Posted January 14, 2013

    I just finished reading Rwanda Inc. and as in past books by Ms.

    I just finished reading Rwanda Inc. and as in past books by Ms. Crisafulli, I was so impressed by the rich content and quality research.

    What I hadn't expected was the dual lessons both from a business perspective as well as a personal one. The Rwanda model of do for yourself, remain independent-minded and self-determining, and forge strategic paternships with those who support your vision underscores what has worked for me. Given that I am a CEO who is retiring soon, I found other thoughtful messages at the end of the book about leaving a legacy and having lasting influence. Bravo on a story that needs to be told and for making it such a rich and rewarding read!

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